El Clasico 2021 – Rival Watch : How will Real Madrid arrive to the game?

El Clasico 2021

Curiously enough, both Barça and Real Madrid are in their best form this season ahead of their head-to-head battle on Saturday. Los blancos are unbeaten since late January, while the Catalans are yet to lose a game in the league this year. This makes this el Clasico one of the most even encounters of the past decade. But what are our opponents’ strong and weak spots?

When talking about Real Madrid’s strengths, the first thing that comes to mind is obviously their midfield. As clearly indicated by the Real Madrid – Liverpool game earlier this week, the sheer quality of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos allows Zidane’s side to easily build up from the back. Often dropping very deep, they are capable of delivering any pass to the charging wingers or to Karim Benzema between the lines. Another undeniable quality of Real Madrid is the way they exploit the wings. Always with the support of the fullbacks and the coverage of the midfield, the wingers are given a lot of freedom, which has really paid off.

Similar 3-5-2 formation?

Recently, Zinedine Zidane has used a 3-5-2, which gives Real Madrid more defensive security, but he has rarely opted for anything apart from his beloved 4-3-3 on the big occasion. This is how Real Madrid will most certainly line up:

Courtois ; Vazquez – Militão – Nacho – Mendy ; Modric – Casemiro – Kroos ; Asensio – Benzema – Vinicius 

Even looking at that lineup, one immediately understands where the key to this game lies for Barça. With Sergio Ramos, Varane and Carvajal all unavailable, Real Madrid will be really weak at the back. A big test for the likes of Jordi Alba and Ousmane Dembélé, who will come up against an unusually vulnerable Real Madrid defence tomorrow.

Even looking at that lineup, one immediately understands where the key to this game lies for Barça. With Sergio Ramos, Varane and Carvajal all unavailable, Real Madrid will be really weak at the back. A big test for the likes of Jordi Alba and Ousmane Dembélé. They will come up against an unusually vulnerable Real Madrid defence tomorrow.

Evidently, the significance of this game is immense. A loss at the Bernabeu would be a huge setback for our title hopes as well as a big hit on our confidence. Yet given our form in 2021, I’m sure we are capable of beating Real Madrid. Above all, it depends on us, not the opposition. Happy El Clasico day for all of us!

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